Philippians 4:6 – Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. (NRSV)
When my children were growing up, we lived on a farm, and we did not have a whole lot of things, but what we did have was a lot of love — and for that we were very thankful
One Thanksgiving, however, the children were not particularly thankful for the roast duck. Since our flock of ducks had increased from a mere two ducks to a whopping thirty-five in the space of a couple of years, we decided to thin the flock a bit. So we captured six ducks and took them to the neighbouring Amish farmer to be "processed". For his labour, he kept four ducks; we got two of them. These I proceeded to marinate and roast. As the tray of steaming fowl was carried to the table — which was already overloaded with sweet potatoes, baked potatoes, apple-nut salad, green beans, snow peas, acorn squash, cranberry sauce, homemade breads, jams, and jellies, with two pies, one pumpkin and one lemon meringue, cooling on the sideboard — the children chorused, "Where's the turkey!?" To this, my husband replied that we were having stuffed roast duck, which was followed by a chorus of objections: "Not Taffy! Not Daffy! Euwooooo! Gross!!!" My determined husband promptly dictated that we would be grateful for the food before us. As we bowed our heads to say the "grace", he blessed the food, but before he could add the "Amen", the kids chorused, as if pre-arranged, "But not the duck!"
Thankfulness. On this weekend, as we pause to remember how very blessed we are, as we think carefully about all the ways God has blessed us in the past year, and as we join with family and friends to "pig out" at the Thanksgiving dinner table, perhaps it would be good, as we turn gratefully to God, also to remember all the people in this world who are not so blessed. There are so very many, some of whom live right near our doorsteps.
Prayer: Generous God, You have given so much to us. So many good and perfect gifts have been poured out upon us. How can we ever thank You enough for all the things You have done for us, but especially for Christ Jesus who has taken our load of sin — every burden we've ever borne — and carried it to the cross? Thank You so very much for that supremely perfect gift of grace. We remember now, as well, all who are in need in this world, and we pray for Your bountiful blessings to be poured out upon them. We pray in Jesus' name. Amen.